In addition to the formal classroom learning that takes place at Akiba-Schechter, students also elect to participate in various extra-curricular activities. Most of these take place during lunch or after-school, on the students’ own time.
The all-school musical is the culmination of hard work and group effort. It is usually the reproduction of a popular musical and it focuses on the collaboration of Kindergarten, Lower School and Middle School. Students have the chance to participate in dance, music, drama, creating stage sets—as well as to work in the stage crew.
Willa Wonka and the Chocolate Factory (Spring 2019 performance)
Chidon Hatanach, the National Bible Contest, is sponsored by the World Zionist Organization and open to students in 6th and 11th grade. In this program, students learn a predetermined selection from Tanach, Torah and its accompanying texts. This material varies every year and always includes at least one book from the Bible, one from the Prophets, one from the Writings, and various commentaries. Students are tested on the material together with other participating schools in Chicago and finalists go on to New York to compete there. New York Finalists proceed to Israel for the International Competition.
Our Chidon HaTanach finalists and their teacher, Mrs. Schinasi, at the competition in New York, May 2019
Middle Schoolers on write and edit the student newspaper, The Akiba Globe, under the leadership of 3rd/4th grade General Studies teacher Joe Esse. Issues feature editorials, interviews, crossword puzzles, and, of course, school news. Students also learn basic journalism skills.
Several times a year, the school will coordinate a Shabbaton, a 24-hour program that lasts from sundown on Friday to sundown on Saturday and is oftentimes led by Akiba teachers. Seventh and eighth graders take part in various Shabbat activities, from singing zmirot (shabbat songs) to performing skits on the weekly Torah portion, to completing a scavenger hunt. These events are meant to build commnity and often take place duing a student’s Bar or Bat Mitzvah.
Under the direction of Art teacher Dara Henning, Middle School students meet at lunch to brainstorm, plan, and create our annual yearbook. This includes photos of every student and recaps the year’s many events and special moments in photos.
Other currently active clubs: